Guide to organizing data and writing the conclusion 2012
Guide to Organizing Data and Writing the Conclusion/Evaluation
Writing in Science• How is writing in Science class different than writing in English class?• How is writing a conclusion for an investigation like “Survival of the Beak-est” different than writing a conclusion for an essay in English?
ExamplesDuring class, we have been learning about how fertilizers help plants grow by adding nitrogen tothe soil. Plants need nitrogen so they can grow larger and repair themselves more efficiently.Bacteria and other decomposers naturally add nitrogen to the soil by breaking down deadmatter from plants and animals. When these are broken down, the nitrogen that was once inthem enters the soil, which can then be used by other plants.During this lab, I was trying to determine if MiracleGro Fertilizer helps plants grow bigger. Myhypothesis was that it would help plants grow bigger because it is a very well-known fertilizer(and it wouldn’t be so well known if it didn’t work). My data supported my hypothesis. Onaverage, the plants that received MiracleGro grew 2 cm in 13 days. The plants that only receivedwater grew 1.35 cm in 13 days. Therefore, using MiracleGro resulted in bigger plants.One source of error that may have produced incorrect data collected was that the experimentwasn’t run for a long enough period of time. I will use the information I learned from thisexperiment when I plant a garden this summer. I will be sure to use fertilizer on my garden tohelp the plants grow larger. I would like to learn more about different types of fertilizers and ifcertain fertilizers work better than others. Then I could use the best fertilizer on my garden.
Differences Structure Hypothesis Aim Observations – only what is seen Look for patterns (use of visuals like graphs) Conclusion use specific data and numbers to describe results explains science behind ideas Evaluation: source of errors
Sample Observation Checklist Yes NoIs a direct statement of the results (not an interpretation or aninference) Ex: In Nectar Island 60 ml were collected using thedropper, 2 ml using forceps followed by BBQ stick with….Note: Imagine the data talking to you. What is it saying?
the 4 different islands.Bar Graph showing average number of nuts collected using different beaks
Sample Graphing Checklist Yes No4 sets of bar graphs (separate/combined)correctly drawnGraph shows data points for average of trialsCorrectly labels X- and Y-axisCorrect units are givenAppropriate title is providedWork is neatly presented
• Aim: How does beak type affect a bird’s ability to eat a certain type of food? NOTE: Choose 1 island• Conclusion Part 1: for your conclusion.Describe results through eyes of scientist. Record observations.Just the facts! Be specific & exact. Use the data (#s)! Look forpatterns.• Conclusion Part 2:Explain the “science” behind the results. Summary that explainshow mutation, adaptation and natural selection played animportant role in the different bird populations’ ability toreproduce and survive.
Big Idea:• All claims/statements in theconclusion need to besupported by actual evidence(real numbers) from theexperiment.
Extension:Read article posted on the blog:How Darwin’s Finches Got their Beaks
BIG IDEA: Evaluation is very important to determine whether the experiment is a FAIR TEST.• There may be several minor errors but overall result remains unchanged.• There may be a single error only but may have greatly affected the final result.
BIG IDEA:•Going over the checklist allows you to check whether you have missed something• You have time to make necessary changes